Humane Choices

Pet ownership means deciding between making Humane and Inhumane Choices.

Definition of humane: marked by compassion, sympathy, or consideration for humans or animals

Shelters/Rescues – Every location is different in terms of rescues and shelters in their area. Seek them out online or in-person to learn more. Shelters and rescues are usually overflowing with dogs in need of loving homes, many of them purebred. You can use the following websites to help you search for rescues and shelters in our area:

Petfinder –
Petango –
Adopt a Pet –

Online Adoptable Dogs – There are several websites that can help you search for a dog to adopt that meets your specific requirements. Just go to any of these websites and input the criteria you’re looking for. You’ll be amazed at the results!

Each website will return to you a list of available adoptable dogs who are waiting for homes and who meet the specific criteria you input regarding breed, size, age, and location.

Breed-Specific Rescues – If you have a particular breed of dog in mind, search for a breed-specific rescue organization. You can Google the information or search through social media. These rescues usually only focus on one breed. Breed-specific rescue groups are made up of dedicated volunteers who house, foster, care for and carefully place purebreds in loving homes. Many times they will have puppies in addition to adult dogs of that particular breed. For prospective dog owners who are interested in a specific breed, this type of rescue group is an alternative to purchasing from a breeder or a pet store, and these rescue organizations do not contribute to the companion overpopulation problem. Breed-specific rescue groups work hand in hand with and complement the work of animal shelters.

Responsible Breeders – If you have a particular breed in mind and want to find a reputable breeder of that dog, look for a Breed Club to get recommendations. You can search through Google or social media to find a Breed Club. Be sure, however, that any breeder you work with:

  • Does not sell to pet stores, sell their dogs online, or allow for dogs to be shipped; they want to meet potential homes to ensure that their puppies are going to good, suitable homes
  • Does not come off as a ‘high-pressure salesman’, but instead, someone who is invested in finding a good family for the puppy, asks you many questions, and will encourage you to make the right decision
  • Should be willing to answer any questions you have and should also ask you many questions to ensure you know what to expect with your new puppy—that you are knowledgeable about the breed and temperament and have made all the necessary preparations
  • Encourages multiple visits and asks that your entire family meets the puppy, as well as the puppy’s parents. They want to see how all members of your family interact with the dogs, particularly if you have children

Learn more about finding a reputable breeder here:

Definition of inhumane: cruel to people or animals in not caring about their suffering or about the conditions under which they live: not humane; lacking humanity, kindness, compassion, etc.

Pet Stores – 98% of puppies in pet stores came from puppy mills located all across the country. While the puppies are sold to the unsuspecting public, the parent dogs live their entire lives in cages, receiving minimal care. They are usually disposed of when they can no longer produce a profit for the breeders.

Puppy Sales Websites – Puppy sales websites are puppy mills selling directly to the public online, willing to ship a puppy to you in exchange for money or meet you in a convenient location (not their kennel). The public is never allowed to see the facility the puppies came from or to visit the parent dogs. Regardless of the look of a website, the parent dogs of these puppies live their entire lives in cages solely to produce puppies for the unsuspecting public. They receive minimal care and are usually disposed of when they can no longer produce a profit for the breeder.